As I began choosing a message for August, I caught the newscast about the hurricane and devastation left in its wake. Although this essay was written from inspiration and a shamanic ritual at the Temple of Khnum (Elephantine Island, Aswan, Egypt), the imagery can be applied to each individual as appropriate for their current life experiences. The basis for this comes from the mythological neter Khnum, as the one responsible for physical creation. The myth tells us that the neter creates all living forms from the muck at the bottom of the life-giving Nile, mixed with the sandy soil of Egypt and then he shapes each being like a clay pot upon his potter’s wheel. When satisfied with the form, he breathes upon or into it, which imbues it with LIFE. Thus, the idea here is that we can use this imagery to “Make or RECREATE our personal VESSEL/Body/personality as needed. It doesn’t matter whether life has treated us badly or things are sailing along beautifully; as the seasons slowly change around us, so one may address the changes positive or negative needed, imagine this recreation of what is needed to enhance or correct and then imagine having the ability of Khnum to pretend breathing life into our vessel--thus, creating or recreating our life vessel -- AS IT MOST RELATES TO THE NEEDS OF YOUR SPIRIT PURPOSE/LIFE PATH.
The imagery can be varied to work with the individual belief or sensibility; thereby, personalizing it to you and your situation or experiences. While I have chosen this example from Egyptian Mythology, the vividness of the concept is truly one that equates to what people describe nowadays as -- REINVENTING themselves. The changing chaotic things we all experience come at us from every direction some days and the next, experiences are positively rewarding and wonderfully progressive. I thus thought this essay might be helpful as inspiration for those times of OMG just as well as the AHA moments as we learn to walk our own walk, speaking our truth and most of all learning to respect others to do the same as befitting their truths.
And so . . . whether one is in the process of tearing asunder what is negative in their life or celebrating accomplishments and moving on with positive experiences, my hope is that this will inspire the making or remaking of your vessel--the physical body in which your DIVINE ESSENCE resides.
THE MAKING OF A VESSEL
It was certainly a difficult struggle from the slime and mud as the lotus, yet it was a journey in measurable increments. Khnum demands so much more. He displays the symbolic horns, which remind us that our journey is upon the waters of the Nile and within the spiral of the DNA wherein lay the cellular memory of all our lifetimes across all time.
Step by painful step and each asthmatic gasp in the intense heat of the day, I climb the mud brick and stone steps leading through four or five layers of history. Hundreds of years of living and working represented by each level of homes stacked one on top of the other and unaware of those who dwelled below and before or would build upon theirs in the future. It occurs to me that climbing up through these ruins I was furiously ripping away the sheets of a calendar but by the year rather than the day. The eons blurred together until only now existed.
In the heat, I could only imagine the ghostly faces peering from the windowless houses to watch the strangely dressed people who were walking past oblivious of their residual existence. Did anyone care that the memories had been recorded in the fabric of time and played repeatedly, unknown, unheard and unseen by visitors and archeologists who come.
Atop all that invisible living, we find all that remains of Khnum’s temple. Broken pieces of granite blocks and fragmented stone floors. Only two pylons still stand joined at the top with a lovely lintel. Many fragmented spells or messages remain on many of the blocks and a few picture images as well. The presence of these pylons still give the sense that it was once and always shall be a sacred place of Khnum, the ram who sees, hears and decides the plight of the people who live along his great river, Nile. He has cared for them for thousands of years. He will continue to do so for as long as he is remembered with the speaking of his name by all who come here.
We walk reverently through the pylons and circle around a gigantic round altar stone, reminiscent of a pottery wheel, which can no longer spine for its size, weight and lack of turning mechanism. Yet as co-creators with the Neteru, we have earned the right to work here. We have the power to visualize our desire, our own potential or destiny and the great wheel spins. We will form a new vessel to contain all that we hope for and our greatest possibilities. We breathe the heart breath, exhale and suck it in again. We make a connection deep into the earth’s core and up into the stars, to stand here: As above, so below. Our visualizing energizes the wheel spinning it faster, blurring with the speed. Khephera, the great black dung beetle, works his pincers and mandible to push and roll the clay from its origin as fertile mud at the bottom of the Nile up to be the clay we drop onto the spinning wheel. Water from a cistern poured over the clay, moistening and shaping the once fertile sludge coagulated as clay and it is malleable in our hands.
Centrifugal force such as the cataract whirlpools roiling rapidly in the great river below, the vessel begins to take a shape coaxed by creative hands. Each container varies by the dreamer and is hardened by baking in the fires within each belly, which contains the flames and embers ignited by the Egyptian Mystery rites that have come before this moment.
There on the stone, I see my vessel/desire. Even though the visualization was to create the vessel from formlessness, mine appeared instantly and in finished form as if I had poured a mold rather than manipulated clay. There exact in every minute detail, I saw a statue of the scribe, which I remembered from the Egyptian Museum. In fact, the paint was also old and chipped as if I had copied the ancient statue exactly in my mind in order to be the vessel for my dream to become the writer or scribe.
Feel free to reinvent the imagery to suit YOU, but remember that the journey itself is a universal metaphor applicable to ????? whatever culture, individual ideals or whim! We are learning to become the creator. Therefore, I wrote of the experience just as it flowed and without any actual plan or prompt.